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jhonrox 11-17-2009 07:49 AM

Connecting Speakers with RCA Input to an Apple/Windows PC
Hi guys,

I have a Bush sound system but the input is RCA, as shown in the image below:

At the moment, I have a 3.5mm Y-splitter, which is plugged into the pc, and 2x(3.5mm socket to 2xRCA socket) cables plugged into the Y-splitter, giving me 4 RCA sockets which is then connected to the speakers! Could someone please tell me how to connect this system to a computer properly, please? I had a look at external sound cards, but they all have 3.5mm output sockets.

All suggestions are welcome!
And if the method you recommend works with both Windows and Apple systems, it will be brilliant!


bobtomay 11-17-2009 08:09 AM

From your Mac you really would only connect 1 pair - the two above 'Front' as you will only get stereo output from the Mac with the stereo mini-plug anyway. You can connect that 2nd pair to the 'Surround' input also to give you stereo on 2 pairs of your speakers. Not sure if it will drive 2 pairs or not, you'll just have to try it.

What you're looking at there is analog input for 5.1 sound. To make use of it in 5.1, you'll need to have 5.1 analog output on whatever device you're plugging them into.

Some Windows based sound cards and/or motherboards will have the analog 5.1 outputs. You'll just have to look to see what is available on your machine.

jhonrox 11-17-2009 07:08 PM

Thanks for the reply, bobtomay.

I would like to have 5.1 output, rather than stereo which is what I'm getting out of my current system. Since you said its analog, should I look for something like this?
MAYA44 USB External Sound Card. The product description says it has analog outputs, with 4 RCA connectors.

Thanks again!

dtravis7 11-17-2009 07:16 PM

I just glanced at that USB sound card but it looks like it will do what you are after. If your speakers had a TosLink Optical jack you could connect it up with a TOSLink cable to the Mac and get your 5.1, but since you are stuck with RCA inputs, that USB card should work. I checked and it supports OSX from what they say.

jhonrox 11-17-2009 07:51 PM

Thanks for the reply, dtravis7.
That's good news!

When you say Toslink, do you mean S-PDIF output? And on an MBP, does it use the same socket as the 3.5mm headphone output? Also, I found this on Wikipedia: "TOSLINK cables do not work well (and may even suffer permanent damage) if tightly bended, and their high light-signal attenuation limits their effective range to 6.1 metres (20 ft) or so."

jhonrox 11-20-2009 07:12 PM

I think I have found a solution:

If I get this Trust SC-550p:
I can buy 3x(3.5mm to 2xRCA) connectors and connect my speaker system to the front, rear and sub/cen outputs.
That should work right?

bobtomay 11-20-2009 09:06 PM

Looks like that should be the ticket.

jhonrox 11-21-2009 06:13 PM


Originally Posted by bobtomay (Post 947640)
Looks like that should be the ticket.


Thanks for the replies guys,
Very much appreciated! :)

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